What are the Costs of Adoption? Is Adoption Trauma?

Avid adoption separation trauma

Separating mother and child causes varying degrees of lifelong trauma for both. If you are pregnant and considering adoption for your baby, please listen to the mothers of adoption loss and more importantly, the adoptees. Educate yourself of the effect adoption will have on both of you before it’s too late.
Anyone (including agencies) that will gain if your baby is adopted will NOT inform you read more…

Temper the Selfies!

By Lori Holden My kids’ first foray into social media has been via Instagram. Instagram is an easy way for me to keep an eye on Tessa and Reed and watch their tendencies, stepping in only as necessary — which it hasn’t been so far. (I’m like Jane Goodall. She observed chimps in the wild habitat of Gombe; … Continue reading Temper the Selfies! →
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What Do I Do When She Lies to My Face?

By Lori Holden [Temporary note: For those of you following the saga of my son’s freak accident, I’m pleased to report he is home from the hospital and we are back in our routine. Thanks for all your well-wishes. We now return to our regularly scheduled adoption advice post.] Question: Our son’s birth mom has been telling lies … Continue reading What Do I Do When She Lies to My Face? →
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Avoiding Sibling Separation in Adoption

By Mirah Riben Michael Allen Potter and his brother and sister were taken from their schizophrenic mother and adopted separately. He writes in “Le Roi Inconnu”:”I stare at people more than I should on the subway. …. One of my greatest fears is to be two seats behind my brother or my sister and not realize it until they’ve stepped onto the platform and the doors are closing behind them. Whenever I leave the house, I have it in the back of my mind that today might be the day that one of them grabs my sleeve on the street.”
This shadow follows those separated from siblings, blocking the light of truth, reconciliation and wholeness. Many describe knowing they have a sibling they are separated from as having a piece of themselves missing.
It has been reported that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have adopted a Syrian orphan. These currently unconfirmed rumors (like those of Jennifer Aniston adopting) have circulated for at least a year, and are doubtful given that Syria, as a Muslim country, does not allow adoption as we know read more…

Hospital Stay

By Lori Holden My son, Reed, was in a freak accident late last week. Everything is going to be fine and we got a new family story to bond us together. We hope he’ll get spring from the hospital soon (hello, Universe — how about today?) and we are all thankful for your outpouring of good wishes. Here … Continue reading Hospital Stay →
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Why Adoptees Search

By Laura Marie Scoggins
One cannot annul the fact that one was given up by one clan and taken in by another; one can only see the consequences of that fact in a new light that illuminates what happened in a healing way. Betty Jean Lifton, Journey of the Adopted Self
One of the most common questions asked of adoptees is why they search for their biological family.
Our response to that question is WHY NOT?!
Should adoptees not be allowed the same equal rights as every other human being on this planet? Why would we not want the same information about ourselves that you do?
Adoptees are denied the basic information that non-adopted people take for granted. I have compiled a list of reasons from many books, blogs, articles, and social media comments that I have read over the years along with the basic questions I always had growing up.
Who Am I? To help me complete my identity and sense of self.
Who are the two people who created me?
Did they stay together after I was born?
Did read more…

Shout It Out

By Cassi So, between taking my sweet Granddaughter to Disney World and getting into our family place at the lake, I’ve spent most of September barely on social media. I’d pick up a little bit here and there when I’d log in but not enough to know what was going on.Seeing the tags for #shoutyouradoption here and there had me curious, but not enough, I admit, to do further research into their meaning while I was away. It wasn’t until yesterday, when I finally got my computer all set back up and ventured back into social media that I realized the disgusting reality behind why the #shoutyouradoption tags came into existence.And my first thought was how heartbreaking and sad it was that our society so easily accepts, shares, and makes viral the clear message that a pregnant woman should be encouraged to keep her pregnancy so that she can carry a baby for nine months and then it give it up to someone else. This is seen as okay. A good solution to abortion. Just carry your pregnancy through, go through birth and then give your own child away to the many read more…

Freak Accident

By Lori Holden “…a stabbing…on the school bus…your son….” Three things no parent ever wants to hear in the same sentence. But that’s what I heard when a police officer called me yesterday afternoon shortly before I expected my kids to come bounding in the door. ~~~~~ I shove my feet into shoes and snag my purse on … Continue reading Freak Accident →
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The Intercountry Adoption Debate

By Mirah Riben What is the debate concerning international child adoption? That depends on who you ask.
Forty-four experts representing a variety of disciplines including law, medicine and health, social work, anthropology, religion, sociology and history have their say in The Intercountry Adoption Debate, edited by Robert L. Ballard, Naomi H. Goodno, Robert F. Cochran and Jay A. Millbrandt.
The formidable 737-page, hard cover volume contains twenty-seven essays in seven sections, which are primarily the result of the 2010 Intercountry Adoption Summit in Canada and the 2013 Pepperdine conference. The editors bring together scholars from all corners of the world where adopted children originate as well as where they are distributed to, to address this complex and controversial topic, providing an in-depth discussion of International Child Adoption (ICA). The Decline and the Debate
The decline in ICA is addressed by many contributors. David Smolin, one of the contributors, wrote about the decline and its effect on the ICA debate on Facebook in July, 2015, shortly after the closing of the Joint Council for International Children’s Services (JCICS or Joint Council) after 40 years of operation. Smolin wrote that: “[D]espite what some may believe, the intercountry read more…


By AstridBeeMom Life has been busy. I started working full time, in addition to going to school full time. I know I’ve been neglecting this blog and I really wish I had more time to write.
There are so many good things in the works right now, as far as family preservation efforts are concerned. I can’t wait until the day I can share it with you all.
One day I was driving and my youngest daughter was in the car with me. She said, “If you wouldn’t have given IKL up for adoption then you wouldn’t be helping so many people with like searches and stuff or to help other people keep their babies.” I had to think for a few minutes before I responded. I hate the “God-ordained meant to be” adoption stories. This was bordering close to it. I told her that she was right. Had I not went through what I went through then I wouldn’t exist in this adoption world. I told her that sometimes when something bad happens to us we use it to do good things so it won’t happen to anyone else. I also emphasized that, if given read more…

U.S. GOA Report on Adoption Rehoming

By Mirah Riben Two years after Reuters’ five-part report on the rehoming of adopted children in the U.S., the U.S. Government Office of Accountability (GOA) has released a report entitled “Steps Have Been Taken to Address Unregulated Custody Transfers of Adopted Children” (GAO-15-733: Published: Sep 16, 2015. Publicly Released: Sep 16, 2015).”GAO examined (1) the reasons adoptive families consider unregulated child custody transfers, and services that exist to support these families before they take such an action; (2) what is known about the prevalence of these transfers; and (3) actions selected states and federal agencies have taken to address such transfers. GAO reviewed relevant federal laws, regulations, and policies and selected state laws and proposed legislation. GAO also interviewed officials from federal agencies, 19 child welfare and adoption organizations, 15 adoption agencies, and 7 states selected primarily because of legislative activity on unregulated transfers. GAO also searched online activity on selected social media sites to find illustrative examples of families who may be considering unregulated transfers.”
The report, which was made with “technical comments” from The Departments of Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, and read more…

Gimme Just 10 Seconds

By Lori Holden Pause for 10 second meditation: cattails in the breeze. #meditation #onmywalk #walkingmeditation #cattails #breeze #nature #mothernaturerocks #soothing #relaxing #reorienting #pause #nofilter #birdschirping #presentmoment #now #payattention A video posted by Lori Lavender Luz (@lavluz) on Sep 7, 2015 at 10:03am PDT Nature is a balm. Stillness soothes. How about we all partake of these freely available … Continue reading Gimme Just 10 Seconds →
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How Search and Reunion Saved My Life

By Laura Marie Scoggins
One of the most common questions adoptees are asked when they tell people they are searching for their biological family or have been reunited is “why would you even want to search?”
The insensitivity of this question makes my blood boil. I have to pause and count to ten before replying. Sometimes when that doesn’t work and the blood boiling makes my head feel like it’s going to explode then I have to count to 100. Sometimes I am just too exhausted to go into detail and let the moment pass without answer.
This moment is intensified when such a naive question is asked by a fellow adoptee, but that is another post for another day.
The total lack of insight and understanding of our society, and especially the pro-adoption Christian church, into the life long effects of being an adoptee is startling.
Imagine what it’s like your entire life every single time you go to the doctor and are asked to fill out a medical history form you can’t. All you can do is write ADOPTED in large letters across read more…

Arc of An Open Adoption

By Lori Holden Guest posting today is Rachel Garlinghouse, mother of three and writer at White Sugar Brown Sugar. ~~~~~ It’s 2006. I’ve just been diagnosed with a chronic, forever disease. I’m curled up in a hospital bed — emaciated, foggy, and angry — when a diabetes nurse educator comes into my room and starts talking to me … Continue reading Arc of An Open Adoption
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Toward Preventing Adoption-Related Suicde

By Mirah Riben National Suicide Prevention Month is an appropriate time to talk about something that puts adolescents at increased risk for suicide: adoption. Attempted suicide is more common among adolescents who live with adoptive parents than among adolescents who live with biological parents. The association persists after adjusting for depression and aggression and is not explained by impulsivity as measured by a self-reported tendency to make decisions quickly. (Slap, et al., Pediatrics, Vol 108, No. 2, August 1, 2001.)
Adopted people are, in fact, four times more likely to attempt suicide than non-adoptees: The odds of a reported suicide attempt were 4 times greater in adoptees compared with nonadoptees (odds ratio: 4.23). After adjustment for factors associated with suicidal behavior, the odds of reporting a suicide attempt were reduced but remained significantly elevated (odds ratio: 3.70). (Keyes, et al., Pediatrics online, Sept. 9, 2013) In addition, a Swedish study found international adoptees were more likely than other Swedish-born children to attempt and to die from suicide (odds ratio 3.6, 95% CI 2.1-5.9); attempt suicide.
The adoption-suicide connection is too often excluded from discussions and scholarly discourse about suicide or about adoption. Maureen McCauley Evans, M.A., read more…

9/11, Ed McCaffrey, Stephen Covey & Me

By Lori Holden Tuesday’s Horror was Preceded by Monday Night Football I went to bed feeling sick the night of September 10, 2001. My sports hero was Ed McCaffrey, #87 and Denver Broncos wide-receiver, general nice guy and spectacular athlete. During that night’s Monday Night Football game against the NY Giants (boo!) Eddie Mac had suffered a broken … Continue reading 9/11, Ed McCaffrey, Stephen Covey & Me →
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